PERSHORE Swimming Club enjoyed another record-breaking weekend at the Worcestershire County Championships held at Wolverhampton Central Baths, as members won another 14 age group titles, 11 silver and nine bronze medals.
This brings the club’s medal haul to an impressive 34 gold medals, 22 silver medals and 18 bronze medals, as well as several swimmers achieving Midland Qualifying Times (MQT).
Will Gearey and Simon Sweatman were both back in action in the boys’ 12-year-old age group, enjoying several head-to-head races and producing a string of MQTs between them.
Gearey (12) picked up five gold medals and three silver medals, while Sweatman bagged a brace of gold medals. Producing personal bests all day, victories for Gearey came in the 100m IM (1.09.74), 200m IM (2.29.60 MQT), 100m freestyle (1.00.78 MQT), 50m breaststroke (37.42 MQT) and 200m fly (2.38.10 MQT), plus second places in the 100m fly (1.08.83 MQT), 50m freestyle (28.01 MQT) and 400m freestyle (4.43.99).
Sweatman (12) also produced numerous personal bests, edged out Gearey to take gold medals in the 400m freestyle (4.43.28 MQT) and 50m freestyle (27.95 MQT) and also took silver in the 100m freestyle (1.00.91 MQT) and bronze in the 100m IM (1.11.45).
Both Gearey and Sweatman will be hoping to qualify for the new Summer Nations Championships in August this year.
Megan Annis was again in superb form in the girls’ 11-year age group, managing to secure podium finishes throughout the weekend and battling for the medals with a Stourbridge rival.
Annis’ best performance came in the 200m backstroke, taking gold in a massive PB time of 2.37.18 and securing her first MQT in this event. She then added gold medals in the 50m breaststroke (40.41 PB) and her second MQT of the day and also took first place in the 100m breaststroke (1.28.72 PB).
Annis claimed silver medals in the 50m backstroke (35.14 MQT), 200m breaststroke (3.09.42 PB), 200m IM (2.46.02 PB) and 100m freestyle (1.08.85).
Patrick Heeks added to his medal haul from the first week, with another two gold medals and a silver in the boys’ 11-year age group. Heeks made it back-to-back wins in the fly events, taking first place in the 100m fly (1.17.15 PB) and putting in a display of strength in the 200m fly (2.51.45 PB) for the gold medal.
He bagged silver in the 200m IM in 2.45.33 (PB) and is very close to achieving MQTs in several events now.
Alex Barry was another swimmer adding gold to her collection in the girls’ 11-year age group. Barry stormed to victory in the 200m IM, with a cracking time of 2.44.71 and a massive PB.
Battling with team-mate Annis throughout the weekend, Barry claimed four bronze medals in the 200m breaststroke (3.16.75 PB), 50m backstroke (36.94 PB), 100m freestyle (1.08.87 PB) and 200m backstroke (2.43.58 PB).
Hannah Woodcock, who found herself in fourth place in several events during the first weekend, finally managed to get amongst the medals. Competing in the 11-year age group, Woodcock snatched bronze medals in the 50m breaststroke (42.21) and 100m breaststroke (1.30.22), edging nearer to achieving MQTs too.
There were also medals for Jasmine Franks in the girls’ 10-year age group, taking a superb bronze in the 50m breaststroke (43.18 PB), a silver medal for Hamish Cross in the boys’ 11-year age group, producing a stunning swim in the 50m breaststroke in 41.96 (PB), and Amy Weston produced an excellent swim in the 50m backstroke (33.23) to claim a well deserved bronze in the girls’ 13-year 50m backstroke.
Helen Annis got gold in the Master 50m fly and Marie Porter took silver.
Other swimmers who competed at the second weekend of the County Championships, producing personal bests but just outside the medals, were Gabriella Barry (9), Lewis Cribben (9), James Heeks (9), Amelia Gearey (10), Lauren Annis (10), Charlotte Downey (11), Ronan Williams (11), Caitlin Yates (11), Olivia Howard (11), Macey French (11), Kieran Cooper (11), Jamie Saunders (11), Isabella Woodcock (12), Luke Perry (12), Isobel Cumming (12), Naomi Marsden (12), Chris Vizard (13), Amy Cooper (13), Jasmine Taite (14) and Beth Carter (15).
Commenting on the club’s record-breaking medal haul, Pershore head coach Tom Naughton said: “A truly fantastic effort from every single swimmer! Nearly all our swimmers produced a personal best in every event and our overall medal haul was simply staggering.
“It was great to see several new faces taking age group titles and others defending theirs from last year. We are now hoping to take a record number of swimmers to the Midland District Championships in May/June later this year.”